The Anglican and the CatholicÂ churchesÂ have announced that they have bannedÂ politiciansÂ from conducting fund-drives or making donations during their services, arguing it is one way of abetting corruption in Kenya.
This follows questions raised by the masses, a section of the political class and anti-graft activists over mind-boggling amounts of money donated by someÂ politicians. While any measures aimed at discouraging graft practices in our country are laudable, determining which money is clean and which one is dirty poses a daunting task to theÂ Church, an institution that is under mounting criticism for placing much premium on money than morality.
It shouldnâ€™t escape our attention that in every mega scandal, there are small fishes playing the role of hatchet men or women for the big fishes. They disguise themselves as receptionists, hair-dressers or suppliers but their main objective is to do the bidding for the ravenous political class, depriving the populace a decent living.
What this means is that the monster of corruption is an intricate web involving those who would not appear asÂ politiciansÂ and the realÂ politicians, a fact which exposes theÂ churchÂ as partial in this latest decree againstÂ politicians. If theÂ politiciansâ€™ money is unholy, so should that of a policeman member of aÂ church who extorts money from motorists; a school principal member of the congregation who embezzles school funds or a tenderpreneur who donates iron sheets or cements to theÂ church.
TheÂ churchâ€™sÂ moral high ground will remain questionable if they shunÂ politiciansâ€™ money, but accepts donations from drug lords, child traffickers, con men and land grabbers who are not in the political arena but are silently pulling the strings from unknown locations. It will put theÂ churchÂ in a situation where they will either set up their own anti-graft committees to determine andÂ rejectÂ the morally decayed in theÂ churchÂ or assume the role of God as the Biblically-stated supreme judge.
In a country whereÂ politiciansÂ have aided in building megaÂ churchesÂ and donating parcels of land in the past, will it be morally upright for religious leaders to ban the sameÂ politiciansÂ from conducting harambees while still allowing their congregations to be housed in the sameÂ churchesÂ that were built by them? Will they bring down theÂ churchÂ buildings; give theÂ politiciansÂ back their parcels of land, iron sheets and cements?
It is immoral to benefit from what you denounce. Such a move will also require theÂ churchÂ to remove the speck from its own eyes before pointing out the skeletons in theÂ politiciansâ€™ cupboards, given past commissions of inquiries which implicated someÂ churchesÂ as beneficiaries of land grabbing.
TheÂ churchÂ will also contend with the possibility of conducting a lifestyle audit about its leadership since we have religious leaders whose wealth are not commensurate to their income, let alone that of theÂ church.
It is safe to say the public long lost hope in theÂ churchÂ as an honest and true arbiter in the myriad challenges the country faces. This is not exonerating corruptÂ politiciansÂ from blame, but Christianity being the refuge for the afflicted and the hopeless, should, at every moment, champion justice and fairness.Â